T32 Nurse Scientist Training Grant

Pre- and Postdoctoral Fellowships in Interdisciplinary Training in Cancer, Caregiving, & End-of-Life Care

The number of patients with chronic and life-limiting illnesses, like cancer, and their family caregivers are increasing, and their health and psychosocial needs are having a profound impact on health services. Our NIH-funded training program is shaping the next generation of scientists to provide evidence on how to best help patients and families sustain health and well-being, foster patient and family engagement, manage symptoms associated with chronic disease, and die free of pain and family burden.

Program Overview

Each trainee will participate in a two-year program (year two is contingent upon performance) consisting of a combination of mentored research and career development, seminars, a journal club, intensives in innovation, trainee interest groups, visiting scholars, conference-based learning, and course work. These nurse scientists will gain the knowledge, expertise, and leadership skills to lead innovative programs of research that will ultimately affect individuals with cancer (and other chronic or life-limiting illnesses) and their families.

Program Objectives

  • Engage trainees in state of the science knowledge and stimulate innovative thinking that addresses key research questions in the three domains.
  • Prepare trainees to conduct research using rigorous methodological skills and sophisticated analytics to support innovative designs that advance the science.
  • Provide trainees with the requisite skills and experiences in successful grant writing, publications and presentations that lead to high impact dissemination, translation, and implementation of research findings to improve clinical practice and community health.
  • Mentor trainees to become leaders of interdisciplinary science teams and influencers of research and health policy in cancer, caregiving, and end-of-life care.

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Training Opportunities

Our trainees may choose to study in residence or be distance-based with intensive on-site experiences. The program’s training opportunities are as follows:

Mentored Research

Trainees have a primary mentor supported by an interdisciplinary mentorship team. Trainees will assist with their mentor's projects and conduct independent research to develop their skills in all phases of the research process, interdisciplinary research, team science, research leadership, and scientific writing, presenting, and grant proposals.

Mentoring for Independent Career Development

Trainees will work with their mentors to identify professional development needs, monitor progress, and implement career plans. Trainees will take ownership of their career development through an Individual Development Plan.

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T32 Seminar

Special Topics in Cancer, Caregiving, and End-of-Life Care Research is a 10-week, 1 credit seminar series featuring experts from across the US, including our faculty, leading discussions in on state of the science research in cancer, caregiving, and end-of-life care. Trainees will build their knowledgebase, develop their networking skills, and create potential collaborative projects.

Journal Club

Trainees select articles related to current research in cancer, caregiving, and end-of-life care and lead a collegial discussion related to the publication. Trainees will gain expertise in peer review and article critique while expanding their knowledge in methodologies, design, and analysis.

Intensives in Innovative Science

Twice a year T32 trainees will participate in experiential learning experiences. Taking the format of a half-day workshop, the fall intensive will be in-person and the spring session will be interactive via video conference. These experiences will stimulate innovative thinking, prepare trainees to question assumptions in the fields of cancer, caregiving, and end-of-life care, and develop new and innovative questions and approaches to advance the science.

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Trainee Interest Groups

Trainees will work together in subgroups that will lead to papers and presentations around shared areas of interest. This will develop cohesiveness and experience in collaboration.

Visiting Scholar

Once a year a member of our esteemed External Advisory Committee will meet with trainees in-person on the campus of the University of Utah. Trainees will present their work to a group consisting of the visiting scholar, mentors, and their trainee colleagues. The visiting scholar is also available to meet with trainees one-on-one. Trainees gain experience in presenting, receive and provide feedback from a national external expert, and broaden their scientific network.

Conference-based Learning

Trainees are encouraged to submit their work to national meetings, providing invaluable presentation experience and opportunities to increase scientific knowledge and broaden their scientific network.

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Coursework

Coursework is tailored to the background and the training objectives of the trainee. All trainees receive in-depth education relevant to their research careers (e.g., responsible conduct of research, dynamical systems theory, etc.).

Eligibility Requirements

Predoctoral Training

  • Baccalaureate degree
  • Enrolled in a doctoral program leading to a PhD or a comparable research doctoral degree
  • The individual to be trained must be a citizen or a noncitizen national of the United States or have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence at the time of appointment
  • Full-time commitment to training, normally defined as 40 hours per week (no more than 10 hours a week of part-time work is allowed)

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Postdoctoral Training

  • PhD, MD, DDS, or equivalent doctoral degree from an accredited domestic or foreign organization, received as of the beginning date of the traineeship appointment
  • The individual to be trained must be a citizen or a noncitizen national of the United States or have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence at the time of appointment.

Application Materials

Predoctoral Training

Submit the following as a single PDF document to faelene.larson@nurs.utah.edu:

  • Cover Page with your name, address, email, and phone number
  • CV
  • Research statement related to cancer, caregiving, and end-of-life care. You are limited to 3 pages to
    • describe your career goals
    • identify a potential mentor(s) and provide a rationale for your selection
    • identify goals for the training period and how they match with the opportunities available
    • provide a brief summary of your research experience and plans for advancing your research program
    • discuss how your focus fits with our training model.
  • Transcripts
  • Academic writing sample
  • Brief summary (one page max) of your years of prior research

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Postdoctoral Training

Submit the following as a single PDF document to faelene.larson@nurs.utah.edu:

  • Cover Page with your name, address, email, and phone number
  • CV
  • Research statement related to cancer, caregiving, and end-of-life care. You are limited to three pages to
    • describe your career goals
    • identify a potential mentor and provide a rationale for your selection
    • identify goals for the training period and how they match with the opportunities available
    • provide a brief summary of your research experience and plans for advancing your research program
    • discuss how your focus fits with our training model
  • Summary (one page max) of your research experience
  • Two letters of reference that address your skills and potential as a nurse scientist in cancer, caregiving, and end-of-life care. If you are within five years of completing your dissertation, one reference should be from the chair of your Supervisory Committee.